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The Thief Lord

3.93 of 5 stars 3.93  ·  rating details  ·  58,154 ratings  ·  2,910 reviews
"Do you sometimes wish you were grown-up?" Venice. Autumn.
Rich Aunt Esther wants only angelic orphan Boniface 5, not serious Prospero 12. She hires PI Victor Getz. Thief Lord Scipo brings loot, clothes, to runaways in abandoned theatre Stella. Hornet adds brothers to gang with tall Mosca and scrawny Riccio.

But Scipio hides a secret. And old Conte from a cursed isle wants
Paperback, 350 pages
Published 2003 by The Chicken House (first published January 1st 2000)
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Community Reviews

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This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.

I've read more books than I remember. From the classy literature books (the classics) to the crummy excuses of children's novels thrown into the public libraries to con young readers into believing that they possess quality my reading has been deep and varied. Yet there are some novels I read as a child that impacted me enough to cause me to read them over again. The Thief Lord is one of those books.

What is The Thief Lord? It is a fantasy tale and an adventure story combined and set in modern Ve
Set in contemporary Venice (around the time of both answering machines and cell phones), this is not exactly what I expected, which was a historical fantasy with lighthearted, adventurous thieving in it. What I got was a more realistic tale of runaways and orphans trying to make it in a contemporary city. Still, bonus points for Venice!

There was a little bit of thieving, but it was more desperate, the group of kids scraping by while living in an abandoned movie theater. It was sad, but heartwarm
Jackie "the Librarian"
Sep 25, 2007 Jackie "the Librarian" rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Venice lovers
It's a great fantasy: Let's run away to Venice, and hide out in an old movie theater. We can dye our hair blonde, so no one will ever find us!
In a way, this is a European version of From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler, with siblings running away to a place stuffed with antiquities, and getting mixed up in an art mystery. I guess Victor the detective must have the Mrs. Frankweiler role.
I didn't expect the touch of fantasy at the end. I'd love to read a sequel to find out what ha
Dec 03, 2013 Peter added it
Shelves: tutoring
Book of the Year Awards... Really? Is it unsympathetic of me to think that this book is... childish? How reductive should authors of children's lit be?

I've been working with a young student this summer, and The Thief Lord, by Cornelia Funke, is a big favorite on the sixth grade circuit. This particular boy had chosen it for summer reading, and so I picked up a copy for myself.


Billed as a "fantastical journey" through "the magical underworld of Venice, Italy", The Thief Lord follows a pair of
Kwesi 章英狮
This book did not work well to me, Cornelia Funke gave me another headache after reading her Inkheart series which I thought will be one of my favorites since the movie was great. I did like the movie very much and I dug a hole 6 feet under for the whole series not be seen by my eyes again. Well, I think I broke one of the important rules of reading and watching book-tie-in stuff. I did watch the movie before the book so that made things worst but I was hoping not.

The last time I remember readin
Dec 28, 2011 AriaStuckinWonderland rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Those who are child-at-heart
Recommended to AriaStuckinWonderland by: jzhunagev
Shelves: kids-book
Venice would be one of the places I'd visit before I die.
The story of The Thief Lord weaved wonderfully with the gorgeous city of Venice.
If this story had been in a different location it might not have been as appealing.
I love it when a book takes me to places I have never been before.
I rarely travel so that factor is very important to me.
This book did just that.
It took me straight to Venice.
Not only did it take me to Venice, I felt like I was right in the midst of the story.
Like I was one of th
I kept fluctuating between 3 and four stars. Ultimately I'd probably opt for 3 and 1/2, but since that's not an option, I'll go with four because I think it's more of a personal taste thing over the quality of the book.

I'm a huge fan of "Inkheart" so had high hopes for this novel. I quickly realized the two have very different styles, and rightfully so, as this book is (at least I assume) geared for a younger audience.

The cast of characters is delightful, each with their own stories and personal
Orang dewasa tidak ingat lagi, bagaimana rasanya,
menjadi anak-anak.
Walaupun mereka mengaku begitu.
Mereka tidak tahu lagi. Percayalah padaku.
Mereka sudah lupa semuanya.
Betapa dunia dahulu berkesan lebih besar bagi mereka.
Betapa repotnya memanjat ke atas kursi.
Bagaimana rasanya kalau harus selalu menengadah?
Mereka tidak tahu lagi.
Kau pun akan melupakannya.
Kadang-kadang orang dewasa bercerita, betapa indahnya
ketika mereka masih anak-anak.
Mereka bahkan bermimpi menjadi anak-anak lagi.
Tetapi apa
I read The Thief Lord two years back when I was in Venice for skiing holiday. The book is excellent, and combined with the right surroundings I was smitten.

Venice in the winter is misty and dreamy, and when we walked around the city, I could almost see the Thief Lord running around with his friends, cunningly planning their theft, getting more and more mixed up in the plots of grown-ups around them. Funke's storytelling is wonderful, her characters believable, and, for a children's book, The Th
Taylor Natkin
The Thief Lord, by Cornelia Funke, is a fantasy novel about a two orphaned kids. After being told Prosper, a boy around twelve years of age, and his younger brother, Bo, were going to be separated through adoption, they run away to Venice, Italy. Nearing winter, Prosper believed he would have to turn themselves in to save his little brother, who was ill. Luckily, the boys were saved by a young girl, with the nickname Hornet. She brought them to her hideout, which held two more boys. Their leade ...more
I was told to start with this book, but began with Inkheart instead. Inkheart is entirely of a different variety, totally magical, but this one is destined to be the classic. Set in the streets of Venice, this book has it all: Italian culture, street savvy kids, the Robin Hood-like notion of stealing from the rich to give to the poor, all the while echoing a sort of Les Miserables-like Griviche type thing.
Everybody loves a gang of orphans! These orphans live in a run down movie theater and rule
still such a brilliant book reading as an adult.
I love the imagination and beauty of this book
I hope Cornelia continues writing beautiful stories like this.
Clarissa Amabel
What a wonderful story!

My favorite character, aside from the kids, is Venice herself. Cornelia Funke has weaved her story so brilliantly in a gorgeous setting, describing the city as if it had its own personality. I think the story wouldn't be as awesome if it were set somewhere else. The mystery that is Venice, the beauty that is Venice... it took my breath away more than once. I also adore the simple illustrations that began each chapter, allowing us a glimpse of the wonderful world these kids
Caitlin Gutilla
I did not realize how juvenile this book was going to be when I first started it. It's a cute little story about a ragtag group of children in Venice, Italy. While I did enjoy the simple story, I think I would have enjoyed it much more if I was around the age of 11 or 12.
Alicia Nabors
I loved this book a lot. I was disapointed when I finished the book. I wanted to know what happened to "The Thief Lord".
After he went on the mmarry-go-round, I alwways wonder what could have happened to him. I love Bo and Prop. They are intresting characters. The love between them is very strong. Barbarossa is one of my least favorite character, besides Esther. He didn't learn anything when he turned into a shrink. This was my first book from this auther. I think I'll read more of her books. I l
I am not sure why I picked this up to reread. I have a sneaking suspicion that the first time I read this I was sick and unable to concentrate and I skipped to the ending without reading the last quarter or so of the book. No wonder that when I thought about the story I thought it had an unsatisfying ending, too magical, I thought. Well, I was wrong. This is a well told adventure that takes place in Venice about a gang of street kids. Actually they are a pretty harmless lot and and they rely on ...more
Another excellent book by Funke. I enjoy her style of writing and interesting likable characters. Above average YA.
Nov 21, 2012 Tyler rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Anyone who loves imagination and excitement.
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
I've really enjoyed most of the Cornelia Funke books that I've read, but the first time I started The Thief Lord the story felt way too typical. Why do so many children's books have orphans for main characters? I felt like I'd already read this book quite a few times. And I felt like the Thief Lord was way too arrogant to be any fun as a character. So I stopped reading after not very many pages and moved on to something else.

On the plus side, this book and the question it raised about orphans in
I am just going to cut to the chase. This novel is EXACTLY like the movie…I mean… the movie is EXACTLY like the book! I watched the movie first which got me to read the book as well. Thinking that the book was going to be a little different than the movie (like all novels are), but to my dismay, there were no differences at all. I liked the fact how the writers in Comet Film Productions created this movie to be spot on with the book. I literally skimmed whole pages and chapters because the movi ...more
T Wattles
Jan 16, 2008 T Wattles rated it 2 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: people who enjoy mysteries
The Thief lord by Cornelia Funke was a pretty good book. This book tells a story of two young boys(Bo and Prosper) who run away and decide to hide from there care givers with a group of misfit runaways in an abandon theatre. In the under belly of Venice, Italy. They get into some sticky situations and have to steal to get money and survive. Including having a wealthy client send the gang on a very special mission. There are many characters include Prosper, Bo, Hornet and the Thief Lord himself ...more
When I read the translations of Cornelia Funke's books (so the Inkworld books and this...) I feel like there's something missing. It might have got lost in translation or it might not have been there in the first place, but whichever it is, something doesn't feel quite right about this. There are some lovely descriptions and ideas in Cornelia Funke's work, it just somehow doesn't appeal to me. And I know her work is targeted at younger people, but I read plenty of YA lit and it doesn't have this ...more
Overall, I really enjoyed this surprisingly quick read. The cover of the story gives the book a feel of historical fiction although it seems to be set in the present. The wonderfully detailed illustrations of the architecture of Venice at the beginning of each chapter further adds to the beauty and romance of the city. The authors vivid descriptions of the winding canals, Saint Marks Square, Doge's Palace and the Rialto Bridge leave you with the feel of the history of Venice and the children mov ...more
Julia Reim
This was amazing I love the magic of books set in Venice oh lord (of the thieves -- see what I did there? Awkward) for a kids book it was surprisingly interesting and just how we already know it from Cornelia Funke, written with thought through plot lines and metaphors, bye
Pam Baddeley
Against the expectation created by the title and cover, till around page 176, this book appeared to be a rather boring tale about orphan children living rough in a condemned cinema in Venice, two of them on the run from their aunt who wants only the five year old, and plans to pack the twelve year old off to a boarding school. The children live off the proceeds of objects stolen by the mysterious Thief Lord, a twelve or thirteen year old boy who does not live at the cinema and comes and goes int ...more
C.B. Cook
Holy cow, was this book good. It was a sweet, mysterious story that pointed out some curious things about growing up too fast and wanting to be younger. At least, that's what I got out of it. ;) Scipio was awesome! Plot twist in the middle was a little predictable for me. One star knocked for language (mostly just uses of the Lord's name in vain).
I listened to the audio version of this. I quite enjoyed it, although it took me quite a few chapters to get into it. It turned out to be rather a different book from what I expected, but that was OK--I liked the surprises! I enjoyed the characters, the setting, and the interesting plot, and it was well-read as well.
This book was pretty interesting! I loved it! So descriptive. I recommend it to all. I don't really want to explain myself because I'm afraid it'll have too many spoilers. There was an interesting take on a merry go round though. I thought it was kind of scary to be honest.
Noah Buhrow
I found this book to be very interesting. Every time the plot would slow down, it would quickly pick up speed again so I was hooked.

12 year old Prosper and his 5 year brother Boniface (Bo) are orphans and ran away to Venice, Italy to escape their cruel aunt Esther. In Venice, they are taken in by a group of orphans led by “The Thief Lord” Scipio. They are able to get by from the things that Scipio steals from around Venice and bringing them back to the theater they live in. From there, a few of
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Cornelia Funke is a multiple award-winning German illustrator and storyteller, who writes fantasy for all ages of readers. Amongst her best known books is the Inkheart trilogy. Many of Cornelia's titles are published all over the world and translated into more than 30 languages. She has two children, two birds and a very old dog and lives in Los Angeles, California.
More about Cornelia Funke...
Inkheart (Inkworld, #1) Inkspell (Inkworld, #2) Dragon Rider Inkdeath (Inkworld, #3) The Inkheart Trilogy: Inkheart, Inkspell, Inkdeath (Inkworld, #1-3)

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